I was That Girl when it came to gym class.
Don’t get too jealous. I didn’t say I was an It Girl. I was THAT girl. You know the one…she who was not known for her coordination, speed, or grace and was never picked first for any team.
I hid in the back of our “squad” (what our gym teacher called our starting positions in the cold, drafty girls’ gym at Virginia High School), preferring to bleed out from my ears than be called on to lead the warm up.
When we played volleyball in fifth grade, I strategically chose the position right next to the server. This was so I could put off as long as possible the moment when I’d disappoint everyone with my abysmal attempt to get the volleyball over the net. Underhand.
I could not do the flex arm hang, I never once made a layup, and I cheated on my mile run around the track without meaning to. (I should have known by the disbelief on Mrs. Witty’s face when she saw my time that my partner had counted my laps wrong.)
The only units I tolerated were kickball and square dancing because it’s kinda hard to screw those up.
So, yeah. I hated gym class. The only thing worse was swimming class, but that is a horrific story for another day.
(Okay, so I was a decent downhill skier, a pretty good water skier, and a b*tchin’ right guide in my marching band, so it’s not like I was a professional couch potato or anything. However, let’s just say I was a much better athletic supporter than athlete at a time when being talented on a court or field carried some capital.)
Other than a couple of obstacle fun runs and a brief stint as a cardio kickboxer (hello, angry hysterectomy belly), my general suckery when it came to Organized Physical Activity That Most People Do followed me right into adulthood. I ran exactly one regular 5K and then retired from that nonsense. I am always the one the yoga teacher has to “adjust.” And I will never-ever-ever play in the student-staff basketball game at my school. Nope. That’s a big, fat negatory.
But a funny thing happened when I hit 46: I woke up one morning and realized I felt like a complete stranger in my body. My hormones were wacky, my clothes didn’t play well with the extra 13 pounds I put on post surgery, and I hurt in strange places when I slept too long on a Saturday morning.
On top of that, the ghosts of some past trauma started showing up and refused to be shoved to the back of my brain for one.more.second.
So what’s a girl to do?
Well, dance, of course.
**This is one of those posts I need to finish another time because there’s a lot I need to untangle, and 10:00 on a school night is not the time for that. But I thought I’d give you the exposition with a hint of complication, anyway.